Are you feeling depressed or anxious? Magnesium can help you fight it out. To know more about the benefits of magnesium for mental health, read on.

Dealing with mental health issues can be frustrating. It is important to talk openly and honestly about mental conditions like depression, anxiety, mood disorders etc. 

When it comes to mental health, magnesium can come to your rescue. 

Several studies have shown the benefits of magnesium in neurological and psychiatric disorders [1]. Being an essential cation involved in many functions within your central nervous system, it helps transmit intracellular signal transductions. When you consume magnesium, it blocks the activity of the excessively stimulated receptors in your brain and enables you to calm down. 

It helps you get into a peaceful state of mind and stay calm. Magnesium could do wonders for your mental health [2].

How Is Magnesium Related To Your Mental Health?

Magnesium benefits your mental health to a great extent. Magnesium acts as a cofactor in approximately 300+ enzymes that help regulate the different chemical reactions in your body. Benefits of magnesium:

  • Improves protein synthesis as well as muscle and nerve coordination. 
  • Helps control blood glucose levels.
  • Regulates the blood pressure in your body.
  • Helps with psychological state problems like anxiety, depression, hypertension, etc [3].
  • Tends to block the activity of your ‘more stimulating’ neurotransmitters and binds it to calming receptors [4].
  • Makes your body calm and restores a peaceful state of mind. 
  • Acts as a natural treatment for anxiety and anxiety-related disorders [5].
  • Improves brain function and plays a vital role in your mental health. 

Magnesium plays a significant role in regulating the neurotransmitters that send messages within your body. As it is an essential mineral, its deficiency can lead to severe mood disorders.

Does Magnesium Improve Your Mood?

Usually, when you are under stress, your body is likely under the influence of your sympathetic nervous system for a long time. It tends to make you exhausted. Various studies have shown that magnesium can help manage multiple stress-related areas in your body [6]

In such conditions, magnesium can affect certain brain functions. It efficiently counters lower stress as well as anxiety. Magnesium levels in your body affect your brain and mood significantly. Low magnesium levels are often associated with frequent mood disorders [7]

Magnesium supplementation can drastically improve your spirits and help with sleep, stress, anxiety, and much more. It helps your body kick into and stay in a “rest and digest” state by playing a significant role in calming you down by activating your parasympathetic nervous system.

Significant research concludes that magnesium intake helps improve heart-rate variability (HRV) scores [8]. These scores help reveal how well your body adapts to stress under certain conditions.

Is Magnesium an Antidepressant?

According to many research studies, magnesium helps people with mood disorders [9]. As symptoms of mood disruptions might also suggest mental health problems, magnesium could help. It provides a shred of evidence that magnesium is an antidepressant. 

According to a significant hypothesis, magnesium can majorly treat depression [10]. Depression mainly results from the deficiency of magnesium ions in your body. 

Three main reasons that induce this deficiency:

  • Stress hormones
  • Excessive dietary calcium
  • Dietary deficiencies of magnesium

Magnesium helps with the causes mentioned above by working as an antidepressant for your body. It tends to block the respective actions of glutamate in the NMDA receptors of your body. In the case of magnesium-deficient patients, NMDA receptors are blocked. These blockages might lead to cell damage and over-excitation [11]. In such cases, magnesium may prove to be an effective antidepressant.

Is Magnesium Good For Anxiety?

Magnesium has proved excellent for anxiety as it efficiently blocks the hyper and actively stimulated neurotransmitters. It binds to the calming receptors of your brain. It also regulates the release of stress hormones such as cortisol in your body. 

A 6-week study involving 126 people who were administered magnesium showed that magnesium helps decrease the symptoms of depression and anxiety [12].

The role of supplemental magnesium treatment pointed out a significant decrease in the efficiency and effectiveness of the symptoms of psychological disorders. The detailed report concluded that the administration of magnesium was successful in patients experiencing anxiety symptoms. 

Is Magnesium A Mood Stabiliser?

Research shows that supplemental magnesium could be of great help when it comes to stabilizing your mood. It reduces mild to moderate symptoms of depression and anxiety in patients [13]. Magnesium acts on the psychodynamics of your attitude and stabilizes it. Research shows that magnesium helps regulate the sending and receiving messages in your body and brain [14], thereby providing better neurological health. As it has a significant part in the thought processes of your brain, it is essential to consume magnesium regularly.

How Much Magnesium Should I Take For Depression?

Magnesium is an essential mineral for your body as it runs approximately 300 processes within your cells. It has proven to be helpful in patients experiencing symptoms of depression. 

An appropriate daily magnesium intake for adults is about 248-450 mg. This amount of magnesium has improved mood in patients experiencing depression [15]. These amounts of magnesium can help you sleep, feel energized, and help with daily activities. 

What Does Magnesium Do For Mental Health?

Provides you with a night of better sleep

Magnesium regulates several neurotransmitters in your body that are related to sleep, like gamma-aminobutyric acid.

Helps treat migraine 

Magnesium helps prevent the wave of brain signaling, which produces visual and sensory changes in patients experiencing migraine. 

Reduces the intensity of pain 

Magnesium inhibits calcium ions from entering cells by blocking the NMDA receptors of your brain.

Lowers your blood pressure levels 

Consuming magnesium helps increase the production of nitric oxide, which in turn reduces your blood pressure.

Improves & helps stabilize your mood 

Magnesium positively influences the GABA neurotransmitters in your brain, stabilizes your mood, and reduces stress.

Helps to combat depression 

Magnesium blocks the influence of active glutamate in the NMDA receptors of your body. These NMDA receptors otherwise tend to make you over-excited and damage your cells.

Aids in fighting anxiety

Magnesium blocks the actively stimulated neurotransmitters and binds them to calming receptors. Research administered with 3,172 adults proved that a rise in magnesium intake might help lower the danger of hysteria and depression [16].

Assures you a calm state of mind 

Magnesium deals in nerve transmission and neuromuscular conduction by putting a brake on stimulating neurotransmitters, tuning your mind into a calm state.

Reduces the risk for type-2 diabetes 

Magnesium helps manage blood sugar levels by improving the blood regulation in your body. 

Improves premenstrual symptoms (PMS) 

Consuming magnesium in appropriate amounts can prevent dysmenorrhea by relaxing the smooth muscles of the uterus. It may also reduce prostaglandins that happen to cause period pain.

FAQs

Does magnesium help with mental clarity?

Magnesium helps improve memory, focus, and mental clarity along with a wide variety of other conditions, including menstrual cramps, ringing in the ears, and insomnia. It helps with depression, anxiety, ADHD, and other disorders, which aid in helping with clarity in mind. It also helps reduce specific symptoms of brain fog.

What does magnesium do for mental health?

Magnesium plays a key role in about 300 processes in the cells. 

It blocks the activity of more stimulating neurotransmitters and binds to calming receptors. This can result in a more peaceful and resting state. A peaceful mind means less or no mental health issues.

Is magnesium good for anxiety?

Magnesium helps reduce anxiety by improving brain function. It reduces stress and anxiety by affecting a part of the brain, which helps regulate the pituitary and adrenal glands. These glands are responsible for your response to pressure.

What type of magnesium is best for anxiety?

  • Magnesium glycinate – is used to reduce muscle pain. 
  • Magnesium oxide – is used to treat migraines and constipation. 
  • Magnesium citrate – is absorbed by the body and treats constipation.
  • Magnesium chloride – is easily absorbed by the body.
  • Magnesium sulfate – to be used as an artificial additive.

Wrapping Up

Magnesium is essential for maintaining health including mental health and plays a crucial role in brain function. Enjoying a spread of magnesium-rich foods can make sure that you’re getting enough of this critical nutrient in your diet. 

Spinach, chia seeds, spread, and avocados are a couple of examples of magnesium-rich foods that make great additions to smoothies, snacks, and other dishes. However, we recommend following a balanced diet is more important than focusing on a single nutrient.

References:

  1. Botturi, Andrea, et al., “The Role and the Effect of Magnesium in Mental Disorders: A Systematic Review.” Nutrients vol. 12,6 1661. 3 Jun. (2020).
  2. Schwalfenberg, Gerry K, and Stephen J Genuis. , “The Importance of Magnesium in Clinical Healthcare.” Scientifica vol. 2017 (2017),4179326. 
  3. Lakhan, Shaheen E, and Karen F Vieira. , “Nutritional and herbal supplements for anxiety and anxiety-related disorders: a systematic review.” Nutrition journal vol. 9 42. 7 Oct. (2010). 
  4. Kirkland, Anna E, et al., “The Role of Magnesium in Neurological Disorders.” Nutrients vol. 10,6 730. 6 Jun. (2018).
  5. Cuciureanu MD, Vink R. Magnesium and stress. In: Vink R, Nechifor M, ,Magnesium in the Central Nervous System”. Adelaide (AU): University of Adelaide Press; (2011).
  6. Phelan, Danny, et al., “Magnesium and mood disorders: systematic review and meta-analysis.” BJPsych open vol. 4,4 (2018),167-179.
  7. Phelan, Danny, et al., “Magnesium and mood disorders: systematic review and meta-analysis.” BJPsych open vol. 4,4 (2018),167-179. 
  8. Wienecke, Elmar, and Claudia Nolden. ,“Langzeit-HRV-Analyse zeigt Stressreduktion durch Magnesiumzufuhr” [Long-term HRV analysis shows stress reduction by magnesium intake]. MMW Fortschritte der Medizin vol. 158,Suppl 6 (2016),12-16.
  9. Nechifor M., Magnesium in psychoses schizophrenia and bipolar disorders” In Vink R, Nechifor M, editors. Magnesium in the Central Nervous System [Internet]. Adelaide (AU): University of Adelaide Press; (2011).
  10. Eby, George A, and Karen L Eby. , “Rapid recovery from major depression using magnesium treatment.” Medical hypotheses vol. 67,2 (2006),362-70.
  11. Blanke ML, VanDongen AMJ. , Activation Mechanisms of the NMDA Receptor”. In: Van Dongen AM, editor. Biology of the NMDA Receptor. Boca Raton (FL): CRC Press/Taylor & Francis; (2009),Chapter 13.
  12. Yablon LA, Mauskop A. Magnesium in headache. In: Vink R, Nechifor M. Magnesium in the Central Nervous System”. Adelaide (AU): University of Adelaide Press; (2011). 
  13. Na HS, Ryu JH, Do SH.,” The role of magnesium in pain.” In Vink R, Nechifor M, editors. Magnesium in the Central Nervous System [Internet]. Adelaide (AU): University of Adelaide Press; (2011). 
  14. Al Alawi, Abdullah M et al., “Magnesium and Human Health: Perspectives and Research Directions.” International journal of endocrinology vol. 2018 9041694. 16 Apr. (2018).
  15. Hruby, Adela, et al., “Magnesium Intake, Quality of Carbohydrates, and Risk of Type 2 Diabetes: Results From Three U.S. Cohorts.” Diabetes care vol. 40,12 (2017),1695-1702. 
  16. Tarleton, Emily K, and Benjamin Littenberg. , “Magnesium intake and depression in adults.” Journal of the American Board of Family Medicine: JABFM vol. 28,2 (2015),249-56.